The 5 Best Xbox One Headsets - Fall 2021 Reviews
The best wireless Xbox One headset that we've tested is the Astro A50 Gen 4 Wireless 2019. These well-built headphones come with a base station that provides a low latency wireless connection. They have a great build quality and a very comfortable over-ear fit, with spacious ear cups and soft padding.
Out of the box, their sound profile is neutral, with a bit of extra boom in the bass range to help bring out sound effects like explosions in games. The Astro Command Center software offers a graphic EQ and presets so you can customize their sound to suit you, and you can even cycle between EQs as you game with a button on one earcup. Their boom mic has an impressive overall performance, and your voice should sound clear and full-bodied, even if you're speaking from a loud place.
Unfortunately, they're better suited for quieter environments, since like most gaming headphones, they don't isolate you from background noise. Also, unlike some wireless gaming headsets, there's no option to use them wired if you run out of battery, although you can still receive audio while they're charging. Overall, these comfortable headphones offer plenty of useful features for gamers and are among the best gaming headsets we've tested.
See our reviewSours: https://www.rtings.com/headphones/reviews/best/xbox-one-headsets
The best Xbox One headsets for 2021
You'd be forgiven for thinking that the best Xbox One headsets are on their way out. But, no, Xbox One headsets are here to stay. Their staying power comes in part down to their inherent excellence, their forward compatibility with the new Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S, the fact that the player base for the Xbox One is still enormous with folks enjoying a larger-than-ever game library, and, importantly, because they are still, easily, one of the best ways to elevate your gaming experience and immersion in games on Xbox One.
With the Xbox Series generation nearly a year old already, it's worth mentioning that some Xbox One headsets will be great for the new-gen console, and some won't b. Generally, it's all been pretty smooth sailing in terms of forward (and backward) headset compatibility, but, to be sure - and if you're on the hunt for Xbox Series X stock - it'll be wise to keep a close eye on the best Xbox Series X headsets and the lineup of Xbox Series X wireless headsets going to see whether you're next set can cover you for both generations.
With game audio being better than ever, and so key to our experiences, upgrading to one of the best Xbox One headsets is an ironclad way to further immerse yourself in your favorite worlds, stories, and in-game moments. And quite possibly, to gain an advantage.
As good as they are, the speakers on the likes of the best TVs for Xbox Series X and the best gaming TVs just can't provide the booming depths and sweeping ranges of game audio that headsets can. And what's more, you can get one of the best Xbox One headsets for around, or under, $100 - a tiny amount compared to a TV with enough audio punch or a top gaming sound system which can dwarf that cost.
Be assured though, that this isn't just a list of the most expensive sets out there: we test a range of headsets and our picks of the best Xbox One headsets always have to conform to a few criteria: the audio quality has to be, at least, of a very good standard, even if the connection is just an ordinary 3.5mm audio jack; then they have to be comfortable enough to leave you ache-free after those longer gaming sessions; and, lastly, the headset's microphone needs to be clear and user-friendly. Beyond those functional categories, of course, the price has to be right. While some headsets may provide excellent sound, the price tags on these can spiral, so value for money is as critical as anything else.
Note: We are seeing US availability of some of our favourite Xbox One headsets, fluctuate a bit in recent weeks (July 2021), but hang on in there and keep coming back to check - these are some of the biggest names in headsets, and they'll soon be readily available once again.
1. Steelseries Arctis 9X
The best Xbox One headset in 2021
Acoustic design: Closed Back
Cable length: 4.3ft / 1.3m
Weight: 13 oz
Compatibility: Xbox One, PS4, PC, Switch, Mac, Mobile
Reasons to buy
+Wireless for Xbox One+Superb sound with 3D spacial on Xbox+Excellent battery life
Reasons to avoid
-It's expensive-'Only' 40mm drivers
The Steelseries Arctis 9X is very much the Xbox One headset of the moment. Specially engineered to work wirelessly with the console, it provides a near-perfect connection, combined with a rich audio experience, and impressive battery life. It's a great package for anyone serious about sound and getting the most out of their Xbox games. While the headset comes with 40mm drivers, which are smaller than many similarly priced competitors, they're well-tuned and deliver audio that punches well above its weight while retaining a nice clarity and richness.
The trademark SteelSeries 'headband' design offers good comfort levels too, meaning you can play for hours without really noticing that you're wearing the headset, which clocks in at a respectable 13oz / 368g. The mic is clear, comes with decent noise-canceling, and is retractable for when you're not using it. While you never completely remove the mic, it's hidden enough for you to use this headset as an everyday pair of cans, connecting to phones and tablets via a Bluetooth connection. That's a real bonus. You can even plug in via the 3.5mm connection if you want to connect to other consoles or devices, although you lose a number of features like 3D Spatial Sound here.
It's a superb all-rounder, but one that plays so very nicely with the Xbox One. If you want to seriously invest in a headset that does everything you need for gaming and beyond, the Steelseries Arctis 9X is well worth a look. It's also compatible with Xbox Series X|S which is awesome.
2. Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2
Surpasses the original model in nearly every way
Acoustic design: Closed Back, over ear
Drivers: 50mm Nanoclear
Compatibility: PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PC
Reasons to buy
+Doubles battery life from the previous generation+Incredibly comfortable +Great microphone accuracy
Reasons to avoid
-Might be a tight fit for some
The second generation of Turtle Beach Stealth 700's comes with some serious upgrades from the previous generation, and for only $50 more than the Stealth 600 Gen 2, it's a serious contender for your next gaming headset.
The Stealth 700 Gen 2 has gotten a design upgrade from the original headset, with a slightly toned-down look (no more bright green on the Xbox version) and a flip-to-mute mic that folds neatly into the earcup. The control buttons have also been reorganized and moved to just one earcup. The buttons are nicely sized and well-spaced out, but if you're used to the Gen 1 Stealth 700s, you might need some time to get adjusted to them.
The Stealth 700 Gen 2 is leagues more comfortable than the Stealth 600 Gen 2, which is saying something as I found the latter fit my glasses-wearing head quite well, but had ear cups that began to pinch after a few hours of gaming. The supple memory foam cushions with Aerofit cooling gel on the Stealth 700 Gen 2 is incredibly comfortable and lets you wear this headset with ease for hours upon hours of gaming.
And these headphones sound great, with large drivers that give you some great all-around sound, and the ability to fine-tune the audio to your liking with the Audio Hub. Turn on Superhuman Hearing mode to get the upperhand in online shooters, or enable the bass boost for some serious rumble during a heart-pumping campaign mission. The Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 is a great headset for the price point - and will have you covered for new-gen gaming on the XBox Series X|S too.
3. Microsoft Xbox Wireless Headset
The official headset for Series X is a fabulous choice for Xbox One
Acoustic design: Closed back
Comaptibility: Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PC
Reasons to buy
+Great bass and surround sound+Great price+Clear mic for mutiplayer
Reasons to avoid
-Mic monitoring could be better-Might be too small for larger heads
The official venture into Xbox One headsets from Microsoft comes in the form of the Xbox Wireless Headset. While really targeted at the Xbox Series X and to be a companion to that latest console, it works beautifully with Xbox One.
The first big wallop of excellence comes in the unavoidably good-value price tag: at just $99/£89, it is way cheaper than rival headsets that are of the same weight category, quality-wise. And it is quality in almost every way: it's extremely comfortable, it has excellent audio performance with a clear audio soundscape, it features incredibly powerful bass, and the surround sound is solid too. A true highlight is the mic quality: this is tremendous, and it's designed well as it can be tucked away neatly when not in use. The wireless Bluetooth connection is one of the best we've tested on the Xbox Series X too. If you like your accessories officials and maybe find yourself in a situation of getting your new-gen console-setup in order before you find that elusive Xbox Series X stock, then this is the headset to span the generational gap.
4. Razer Nari Ultimate for Xbox One
Feature packed and with excellent wireless audio
Acoustic design: Open Back
Cable length: Wireless
Weight: 15 oz
Compatibility: Xbox One, PC
Reasons to buy
+Haptic feedback feels good+Superior audio quality+Very solid wireless
Reasons to avoid
-Mic isn't the best
The Razer Nari Ultimate is an incredible gaming headset, but one that comes at a premium price. In addition to bringing excellent surround sound, the headset also offers haptic feedback, which means this vibrates in time with the audio so you can literally feel the big noises (usually explosions). While this may seem like a gimmick, it actually makes a noticeable difference to how you experience a game, so if you're big on action titles, this headset is definitely for you.
Elsewhere it's worth noting that the Nari Ultimate is wireless, and that the battery life is surprisingly good considering this has haptic feedback as well as the usual audio features. It's comfy, subtly designed, feels good if you're wearing glasses, and has a retractable mic. In fact, the only real issue is the mic, which doesn't offer the same premium sound quality as the rest of the features of the headset. Not really poor, but not market-leading either. So, if you're a big talker, that could be an issue. If not... there's nothing quite like the Nari Ultimate and if you have the cash we'd recommend this for the feel of using it alone, as it's easily one of the best Xbox One headsets we've tested - and it'll work with Xbox Series X|S!
Note that you can buy this Xbox One specific Nari Ultimate headset which is very focussed for the console and gaming, but will then require the Microsoft Wireless Adapter to use it with your PC as it does not include a 3.5mm connection option.
5. Turtle Beach Recon 500
A refresh for the model ends in great quality and value for XSX
Acoustic design: Closed Back, over ear
Drivers: 60mm Eclipse
Compatibility: Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PS5, PS4, PC, Switch, Mobile
Reasons to buy
+THAT excellent sound+No ‘gamer aesthetic’ flare or design quirks+Zero distortion
Reasons to avoid
-Nothing special about its construction materials
This is a great contender for best Xbox One headset that will also serve you incredibly well for a new-gen console if you've got one - or are yet to go one. And that's all down to a simple wired connection that the Recon 500 offers - oh, and also the supreme audio quality and excellent value it offers too.
You won’t find lavish gamer-y design flairs or the most premium construction materials on the Recon 500, then, since Turtle Beach’s latest in the long-running line costs less than $100/£100. What you do find, crucially, is sound so good it takes you aback, and offers an Xbox One headset experience that is not hard on the wallet, but offers great bang for buck performance and value.
Wood composite injection technology. 60mm drivers. Dedicated woofers and tweeters per earcup. It doesn’t sound like the recipe for crisp, precise sound, and yet it all comes together in a powerful surge of ultra-responsive bass, detailed high end, and a pleasingly flat EQ curve with just a bit of audible kick further down the spectrum.
So that’s yours. Take it to the bank. But what isn’t coming along for the ride is much in the way of added features - this is a simple wired model (which offers greater flexibility and compatibility, of course) with just a mic mute, detachable mic arm, and volume scroll wheel in the way of physical controls. Not one for perennial tweakers then, but those who enjoy value, simplicity, and fundamentally great audio should scout out this new Recon.
6. Razer Kraken Tournament Edition
The best value Xbox One headset
Acoustic design: Semi-open Back
Cable length: 4.3ft / 1.3m
Compatibility: Xbox One, PS4, PC, Switch, Mac, Mobile
Reasons to buy
+Great all-rounder+Decent audio through standard connection+Very comfy
Reasons to avoid
-Mid-range sound could be clearer-Xbox misses out on some features
We love the Razer Kraken Tournament Edition. For the $80 / £75 price, you get a lot of headset for your money here. The 50mm drivers deliver a clear, loud 5.1 sound that easily matches the quality found in headsets that cost way more than the Tournament Edition. It's one of the best headsets for online play, helping you pick out enemy movements and distant gunfire at a decent range and with great accuracy.
Elsewhere, the Kraken TE is light, comfortable (thanks to cooling tech in the ear-cushions), and sturdy - three things you really need in a mid-priced Xbox One headset. The wired connection comes with an in-line control for volume and mic muting (although this only currently works on PC), and the retractable mic itself is clear without being exceptional. Our previous champion was the Razer Kraken Pro V2, but the TE now offers superior value and audio for roughly the same price (in some cases, you can even find it cheaper), so it replaces the older model. It's one of the most well-rounded and versatile headsets we've tested, and represents great value for money. That bold Xbox green coloring is the icing on the cake - and the cherry on top is that it's compatible with the Xbox Series X and S.
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7. Corsair HS75 XB Wireless
Perfect for multiplayer with great positional audio mic
Acoustic design: Closed Back
Weight: 13.2oz (374g)
Compatibility: Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One
Best Budget Gaming Headset 2021: Cheap Gaming Headsets for All Gamers
Getting the best gaming headset doesn't need to cost a fortune. Rather there are plenty of budget gaming headsets that incorporate fantastically comfortable designs. What's more they can offer a surprising array of audio features for surround sound and enhanced sound, and most importantly a decent microphone for above potato quality team chat. Memory foam, sizable speaker drivers, metal construction, clear microphones, virtual surround sound, and even wireless connectivity, it can all be had with a surprising number of budget gaming headset.
While there are so many available options, we've cut through the fluff to find and test the best options for you. These inexpensive options offer a ton of value for around $100 or less. Whether you're playing on an Xbox Series X/S or PS5, or a gaming PC, we've picked out some truly outstanding budget options so you can be sure you're getting your money's worth — you can find them here in the UK. If you want to try to snag some more premium headsets at a discount, don’t miss these deals on certified refurbished video game accessories from eBay.
TL; DR – These are the Best Budget Gaming Headsets:
1. SteelSeries Arctis 1
Best Budget Gaming Headset
Compatibility: PS4, Xbox One, PC/Mac, Nintendo Switch, Mobile ● PS4, Xbox One, PC/Mac, Nintendo Switch, Mobile ● Interface: wired ● Connections: 3.5mm audio cable ● Drivers: 40mm neodymium ● Frequency response: 20Hz - 20,000Hz ● Surround sound modes: 2.0 ● Weight: 272g 272g
On a tight budget, you really can't do better than the SteelSeries Arctis 1 (read our review). This headset isn't doing anything wild, like tossing in 7.1-channel surround sound or delivering Bluetooth, 2.4GHz wireless, and wired connection. But, for just $50, it's offering an exceptional experience for gamers.
The SteelSeries Arctis 1 takes design cues from the rest of the Arctis line, though it's ditched the suspension headband design for a lower-profile approach with a simple cushioned headband and size-adjustment sliders. That said, it does feature spacious earcups and 40mm neodymium drivers like the other headset in this series, and it even offers the same Airweave fabric on its ear cushions for breathability and comfort. The headset delivers solid sound from just about any source that uses a 3.5mm headset jack, and your teammates will appreciate clear voice comms from you through the ClearCast microphone.
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2. Corsair HS35
Best Ultra Cheap Gaming Headset
Compatibility: PS4, Xbox One, PC/Mac, Switch, Mobile ● Interface: wired ● Connections: 3.5mm audio cable ● Drivers: 50mm neodymium ● Frequency response: 20Hz - 20,000Hz ● Surround sound modes: 2.0 ● Weight: 250g
Corsair launched its very first ultra-cheap gaming headset, the HS35 (read our review), recently and it's extremely good, especially for its $35 price. It's only a stereo headset, so there's no fancy surround sound, but you can't really ask for more from this extremely low price point.
It fully cross-platform though, so you can use it on PC, consoles, and even your phone/tablet. Its large 50mm drivers deliver an expansive soundstage. Its flexible boom mic also delivers great sound quality and it's Discord Certified too. That all said, the audio balance of the HS35 is only so-so due and the bass can be a little too heavy for my taste. There's some give and take, but you won't find a cheaper quality gaming headset than this.
3. Xbox Wireless Headset
Best Budget Xbox Gaming Headset
Compatibility: Xbox Series S/X, Xbox One, PC, Mobile ● Interface: Wireless, wired ● Connections: Xbox Wireless, Bluetooth, USB-C, 3.5mm ● Drivers: 40mm Neodymium ● Frequency response: 20Hz - 20,000Hz ● Surround sound modes: Windows Sonic, Dolby Atmos, DTS Headphones:X ● Weight: 312g
You don't have to spend a ton to get a good wireless gaming headset that's going to work seamlessly with your Xbox Series S or X. The new Xbox Wireless Headset is built to connect directly with your Xbox using the Xbox Wireless protocol, so you won't need any extra dongles or accessories cluttering your gaming setup. And, since it's made specifically for the system, you'll get to enjoy digital surround sound support in your games.
The Xbox Wireless Headset has all you need to get in the game. From its large over-ear headphones with 40mm speaker drives and its retractable boom mic, it's got the hardware for you to hear the game and be heard by your teammates. If you want your headphones to do a little more than just game, you can also use these headphones with computers and mobile devices over Bluetooth or 3.5mm audio cables, letting you get that much more functionality for your money.
4. Sony Pulse 3D
Best Budget PS5 Gaming Headset
Compatibility: (Wireless) PS5, PS4, PC, Mac (Wired) Mobile ● Interface: wireless, wired ● Connections: 2.4GHz wireless USB dongle, USB-C, 3.5mm audio cable ● Drivers: 40mm Neodymium ● Surround sound modes: Tempest 3D ● Battery life: 12 hours ● Weight: 295g
You might expect a first-party product to cost extra, but the Sony Pulse 3D (read our review) headset is actually fairly affordable. At just $99, you're getting a pair of wireless gaming headphones that are going to work seamlessly with your PS5. Considering wireless headsets aren't too commonplace at this price point, these headphones become an even better offer.The headset is designed for PS5 and will deliver Sony's special blend of spatial sound through Tempest 3D audio, giving you a more realistic experience in games.
The headset will also work with PS4, PC, and Mac wirelessly. With a 3.5mm audio cable and USB-C connection, it can support even more devices. With 12 hours of battery life, it may not be the most power-packed headset, but it should have enough juice to get you through a couple of long gaming sessions as long as you remember to recharge regularly. Of course, you can always just wire the headset into your controller if you run out of power.
5. Turtle Beach Recon 500
Best Wired Gaming Headset
Compatibility: Xbox Series X/S, PS5/PS4, Nintendo Switch, PC, Mac ● Interface: Wired ● Connections: 3.5mm ● Drivers: 60mm dual-driver ● Frequency response: 20Hz - 20,000Hz ● Surround sound modes: 2.0 ● Weight: 355g
Turtle Beach hasn’t just released another pair of cheap headphones with the Recon 500 (read our review). Instead, it’s taken the time to revamp the audio coming through by introducing new 60mm dual drivers that split up the high and low frequencies for impressive audio detail. That might all sound like PR speak, but we tested them, and they sound great in games with engines revving and explosive booms all coming through clear.
That high-quality audio is something you can take with you from platform to platform, as the Turtle Beach Recon 500 uses a 3.5mm wired connection, so it can support just about any platform. The headset has convenient controls with a volume dial on the left earcup and a simple-to-push button to mute the mic. The subtle looks of the headset also make it one you can wear away from your gaming setup, and you can detach the mic to remain even more discreet.
6. Corsair HS70 Pro
Best Budget Wireless Gaming Headset
Compatibility: PC, PS4 ● Interface: wireless ● Connections: 2.4GHz wireless USB dongle, Micro USB ● Drivers: 50mm Neodymium ● Frequency response: 20Hz - 20,000Hz ● Surround sound modes: 7.1 ● Battery life: 16 hours ● Weight: 331g
The Corsair HS70 (read our review) was one of the first cheap wireless gaming headsets, and it's only gotten better with the upgrade to the HS70 Pro. You can use it for both PS4 and PC, with support for 7.1-channel surround sound on the latter.
You're getting a well-crafted headset with a headband and ear cups that are both made of an incredibly plush memory foam material, so you won't find many gaming headsets more comfortable than the Corsair HS70 Pro. If you want to go wireless and stay on budget, this is the best option for you.
7. SteelSeries Arctis 7X
Best Multi-Platform Budget Gaming Headset
Compatibility: Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, PS4/PS5, PC/Mac, Nintendo Switch, Android, iOS● Interface: wireless, wired ● Connections: 2.4GHz wireless USB-C dongle, USB-C wired, 3.5mm audio cable ● Drivers: 40mm Neodymium ● Frequency response: 20Hz - 20,000Hz ● Surround sound modes: 7.1 ● Battery Life: 24 hours
Short of using a wired connection, it can be pretty hard to get a good headset that'll play nice with both sides of the console market. But, the SteelSeries Arctis 7X (read our review) will do just that. It's not going to be as cheap as some of the other headsets on this list, but it's nearly doing the impossible by supporting both the Xbox Series X and the PlayStation 5 – wait for it – wirelessly. Yep, that's right. The SteelSeries Arctis 7X supports a wired connection if you need it, but the USB-C dongle will let you connect to the next-gen console of your choice wirelessly.
That alone is some serious value for a headset to offer, but the SteelSeries Arctis 7X doesn't stop there. You're also getting support for Android, iOS, Nintendo Switch, PC, and Mac. That's thanks to a wide variety of connectivity options. Depending on which platform you're on, you can even get virtual surround sound. All that, and it offers a comfortable design and a 24-hour battery life. (Note: the near-identical Arctis 7P does not support Xbox Series X.)
8. PDP LVL50 Wireless
Wireless Audio on the Cheap
Compatibility: PS4, Xbox One ● Interface: wireless, wired ● Connections: 2.4GHz Wireless Dongle, 3.5mm audio cable ● Drivers: 50mm Neodymium Drivers ● Surround sound modes: 2.0 ● Weight: 300g
With the PDP LVL50 (read our review), we've come to another affordable wireless gaming headset option. It's a stand out $80 headset that'll work with the Xbox One, PS4, and PC thanks to its dedicated wireless dongle that makes setup easy.
This pair of cans push out some seriously loud audio, to the point that we had to keep the volume nob at 50% most of the time. There's no fancy surround sound here, but positional audio was still pretty good even with just stereo. The only thing holding back this wireless gaming headset is its all plastic and sometimes creaky build quality.
9. HyperX Cloud Stinger S
Best Budget Surround Sound Gaming Headset
Compatibility: PC, Mac, Xbox One, PS4, Nintendo Switch, Mobile ● Interface: Wired ● Connections: 3.5mm Audio Jack, USB-A Dongle ● Drivers: 50mm Neodymium drivers ● Frequency response: 18Hz - 23,000Hz ● Surround sound modes: Virtual 7.1 (PC Only) ● Weight: 275g
HyperX's Cloud Stinger design continues to evolve, and with the Cloud Stringer S you get to level up the experience with virtual surround sound for a solid combination of comfort and audio. The HyperX Cloud Stinger S offers up a lightweight design at just 275 grams, so you'll barely feel it on top of your head, but it's still squeezing in 50mm drivers for powerful sound.
The headset can connect to almost any device using its 3.5mm audio cable, but that won't give you the 7.1-channel surround sound experience. For that, you'll need to connect to a Windows PC using HyperX's USB dongle. Then you'll really be getting the most out of the HyperX Cloud Stinger S. If you're not gaming on PC, you can skip the surround sound and save a few bucks by going with the simple Cloud Stinger or even the cheaper Cloud Stinger Core.
10. Corsair HS60 Haptic
Best Budget Haptic Gaming Headset
Compatibility: PC ● Interface: Wired ● Connections: USB ● Drivers: 50mm Neodymium ● Frequency response: 20Hz - 20,000Hz
Headphones are great for getting full immersion in your games, particularly thanks to the positional audio you can get. But, most headphones lack the oomph to make you physically feel the sounds in the game – something a dedicated subwoofer can do in a speaker setup. Fortunately, haptic headsets are a thing, and Corsair's HS60 Haptic is an affordable option.
This headset will connect to your PC over a USB connection and deliver the rumble from your games right into each ear cup with its haptic motors. Pair that with support for Windows Sonic surround sound, and you'll get a bit of extra immersion that standard headphones wouldn't offer. Corsair also takes pains to make sure its headsets are comfortable, and the Corsair HS60 Haptic has spacious ear cups and a headband with plenty of cushioning packed inside and a study build to help make sure this is a headset that'll last.
Where to Get the Best Budget Gaming Headsets in the UK
Finding the right gaming headset can be a match made in heaven, but you don't need to pay above and beyond to find your lucky set. Out of all the headsets we've tested on this list, every single one is available to pick up in the UK, and at a reasonable price. Whether it's our favourite the SteelSeries Arctis 1, or the incredibly affordable Turtle Beach Recon 70, there is a headset ready and waiting for you. Don't see the headsets below? Click here.
What to look for in a Budget Gaming Headset
We've picked out the cream of the crop when it comes to budget gaming headsets, but you can still run into a lot of bad apples. Here we'll tell you about a few things you should expect from this market of cheap gaming headsets including build and sound quality.
Of the budget gaming headsets we've tested, we found that build quality can run the gamut between flimsy and cheap to super sturdy to the point of being almost too heavy. Of course, you’ll also get better build quality as you move up the price scale—less molded plastic and more metal. If you can check out these gaming headsets in store, be sure to not just put them on but give them a decent stretch (without snapping them in half!) and see if it creaks at all.
Although you will find scratchy fabric ear cups on some models, you’ll also encounter smooth synthetic leather and soft fabric, too. When it comes to leather vs fabric, it all comes down to your preference, but know that leather offers more sound isolation while fabrics are more breathable. Also be on the lookout for memory-foam padding as it offers the cushiest, most comfortable fit against your head.
Sound quality can be impressive across the board, though the tendency we found across the category was to favor low frequencies instead of highs or mids. You’ll get cleaner highs and better separation between mid and low frequencies in the midrange gaming headsets or higher class peripherals.
Kevin Lee is IGN's Hardware and Roundups Editor. Follow him on Twitter @baggingspam
Mark Knapp is a regular contributor to IGN and an irregular Tweeter on Twitter @Techn0Mark
The best Xbox One headsets for 2021
The Xbox One has an amazing array of multiplayer games, but a multiplayer gamer is only as good as its headset. Having a good headset can be the difference between life and (virtual) death in most multiplayer games. Quality headsets can help you hear footsteps behind you, call out instructions to teammates, and even point out locations of enemies. Not hearing a teammate can destroy a winning streak.
We’ve compiled a list of the best wired and wireless headsets. Our choices below are based on sound quality, comfort, and cost. The Astro Gaming A50 is a high-quality headset that has everything to offer, including Dolby Digital surround sound. These picks are also a worthy choice for the Xbox Series X|S for the time being as we wait for more next-gen optimized headsets.
If you’re looking for more affordable gaming headsets, see our picks for the best cheap gaming headsets.
The best Xbox One headsets at a glance
The best: Astro Gaming A50
Why should you buy this? It’s the best headset available for Xbox One, and offers a wireless connection to boot.
Who’s it for? Xbox gamers who want a headset with everything (and can pay for it).
Why we picked the Astro Gaming A50:
The refreshed A50 lives up to the Astro name, and then some. Showcasing a futuristic design imbued with wireless 5.8GHz technology, this high-end headset delivers some of the best audio of anything in our roundup. The A50 boasts Dolby Digital 7.1 surround sound that provides an immersive soundscape no matter what you play. To further enhance your gameplay, three varied EQ modes allow you to adjust the sound — giving you a quick way to boost the bass or treble — while the unidirectional microphone helps isolate your voice from ambient noise.
The Astro Gaming A50 also includes all the extra perks you’d expect from a high-quality headset, including auto shutoff, hassle-free wireless connection, and long battery life. But most importantly, the A50 makes games more engrossing and entertaining. For the serious gamer, the audiophile, or those who just love great sound, it’s a must-have — provided you’re willing and able to cough up the cash. For Xbox gamers, Astro offers an Xbox One-specific version, which includes a wireless adapter for the console to get the most from the headset.
Read our full Astro Gaming A50 review
The best premium wired headset: Turtle Beach Elite Pro 2
Why should you buy this? It’s the best-sounding wired headset for virtual surround available for the Xbox One.
Who’s it for? The audiophile gamer who doesn’t need a wireless connection.
Why we picked the Turtle Beach Elite Pro 2:
Wired headset connections may be a little more limiting, but they come with their own advantages, too — you don’t have to worry about wireless audio cutting out at a key point, for example. That’s one reason this Turtle Beach headset has such a good reputation as a reliable competitive gaming headset.
This stylish headset also has excellent 50mm drivers, but gamers may be even more pleased with the unidirectional, flexible gaming mic with noise-canceling capabilities, which can be adjusted into any position depending on your competitive gaming habits. You can also pair it with the Turtle Beach SuperAmp for more control if you prefer. The gel-infused ear cup material is also designed to keep things cool while providing passive noise cancellation. Oh, and the whole design is also made to be more comfortable for those who wear glasses.
Finally, we’ll point out another advantaged to choose wired over wireless: You can get many of the same audio perks and sound quality at a significantly lower price, while also makes this Turtle Beach headset one of the more affordable picks at the higher end of gaming headphones.
The best premium wireless headset: Razer Nari Ultimate for Xbox One
Why should you buy this? Razer’s headset is perfect for streaming and immersive sound — and the haptic feedback is an interesting plus!
Who’s it for? Gamers who want a unique headset that’s fit for every type of gaming experience.
Why we picked the Razer Nari Ultimate for Xbox One:
Razer crafted this headset for competitive gaming and added a very unique feature it calls HyperSense, or haptic feedback, which creates mini vibrations to indicate in-game actions from gun recoil to explosions (and is fully adjustable). It also supports Windows Sonic audio for Microsoft-certified surround sound and will work with the Series X if you ever decide to upgrade.
But even outside of haptic feedback, this is an extraordinary headset. The aluminum frame is extra durable, the headband and swiveling ear cups accommodate nearly any position, and the gel-infused cushions help the headset stay cooler to the touch for more comfort during long gaming sessions. The retractable stays out of the way when not in use and offers chat mix controls to find just the right balance for you.
Inside, the 50mm drivers offer excellent sensitivity and response to pick up the quietest sounds while delivering smooth bass. While Razer may be known more for its gaming machines than its audio, the hardware here is top grade and doesn’t disappoint in the slightest. The only thing to note is that this headset is pretty heavy, which may affect comfort levels after long periods of play.
The best budget wired headset: Corsair HS50
Why should you buy this? It’s more versatile, features better performance than headsets that are twice as expensive, and is often on sale.
Who’s it for? The budget-minded gamer.
Why we picked the Corsair HS50:
The Corsair HS50 is the most affordable of our Xbox One picks, and while that’s great news for anyone on a tight budget, even big spenders will want to consider this model.
The Corsair HS50 uses a 3.5mm wired connection, which means not only does it easily plug into your Xbox One controller, it’s also compatible with the PlayStation 4, PCs, Nintendo Switch, and mobile devices — you won’t find that kind of versatility in a wireless model. The Corsair HS50 also provides excellent sound quality that rivals that of other headsets costing two or three times as much — if not more.
Since it’s a wired model, there are some trade-offs, however. Due to its single 3.5mm connection, the Corsair HS50, unfortunately, lacks virtual surround sound. Thankfully, the stereo mix offers accurate positioning even without DSP assistance. To top it off, the headset sports an attractive, minimalist design, with a detachable mic that makes it possible for it to double as a pair of headphones in a pinch.
We won’t pretend there aren’t benefits to opting for a pricier pick, including the luxury of wireless freedom, but the Corsair HS50 makes a strong case that even a modestly priced, entry-level headset can work for just about everyone.
The best budget wireless headset: PDP Afterglow AG 9+ Xbox One edition
Why should you buy this? You’ll get a comfortable, great-sounding headset without going broke.
Who’s it for? Those on a tighter budget looking for a wireless option.
Why we picked thePDP Afterglow AG 9+:
PDP’s Afterglow AG 9+ is a great wireless headset, and best of all, it manages to make a strong impression despite being in the sub-$100 price range. The primary reason for this is a solid audio performance. While the mix can be a bit top-heavy at times — favoring the treble and midrange over the bass — it’s still a great audio device overall. Unlike some wireless headsets, there’s practically no wireless hum, which becomes especially welcome during quieter listening moments. No one wants to be exploring The Witcher 3‘s Island of Skelligewith an annoying buzz along for the ride.
While the aesthetics are less than subtle (something that afflicts many gaming headsets, to be fair), the build quality is top-notch, providing heft and sturdiness that is often woefully absent from other headsets in this price range. Like the Corsair HS50, the Afterglow Ag 9+’s mic is removable, which is helpful for instances you don’t need a mic and want it out of the way. We like the simple, on-ear volume and mic controls, too. Perhaps the most impressive thing about the Afterglow AG 9+’s design, however, is the comfort of the earcups and headband padding. These generously padded sections feel more like soft fabric upholstery than thin leather or polyester. The fabric is light and breathable, keeping your ears cool during long-haul gaming nights.
Speaking of long playing sessions, the PDP Afterglow AG 9+ has a 15-hour battery life and can seamlessly swap to a wired connection for charging simultaneously.
How we test
Like we do for all the products we test, including PS4 headsets, we put gaming headsets through the wringer. We base our recommendations on our observations regarding audio quality, comfort, mic performance, and other features like wireless connectivity and battery life if applicable. We play games of various sound experiences to ensure the headsets will sound great during frenetic action sequences, as well as quieter moments. We assess audio quality by listening to music and videos. We use songs from various genres and try different bit rates to see how well the headphones perform in different situations.
For mic testing, we record clips of ourselves speaking in quiet and loud environments, with any noise canceling or enhancements toggled on and off. Our testing process lasts for several days. The best way to get a feel for how comfortable the product is or to see how well the battery performs is to use the headsets while playing video games, listening to music, or watching videos over the course of several days.
One amazon xbox best headset
The 6 best Xbox One headsets you can get on Amazon
Since Xbox is one of the most popular consoles out there, there’s no shortage of compatible accessories. That said, choosing the absolute best Xbox One headset for you requires some additional research. There are tons of factors that make for a great gaming headset, but ultimately, you can narrow down your options depending on your connectivity preference (wired or wireless), compatibility, and other key features.
Connectivity is arguably the most important feature in a headset: In order words, are you looking for a wired headset or a wireless one? The former will likely have better sound quality (likely at a more affordable price point) and you won’t have to worry about changing out the batteries. However, a wireless headset may look sleeker and will offer more freedom of movement while gaming. Obviously, all of the headsets featured here will work seamlessly with Xbox One — but do you game on any other consoles, too? If so, opt for one that’s also capable of connecting to your PC, PS4, Switch, or even mobile.
Last but not least, ask yourself what other features are important to you while gaming: Do you want your headset to filter out background noise? Are you looking to make an investment that’ll last you years or are you just looking for a solid headset at a reasonable price? You'll find all of the aforementioned below — plus a few headsets that have it all.
1. The best wireless Xbox One headset
Yes, it’s an investment, but experts and gamers alike agree that the SteelSeries Arctic 9X is worth every penny. For one, it’s made with integrated Xbox connectivity, so it syncs up in seconds (just like a wireless controller). For another, its Bluetooth capabilities allow you to take calls and play music while you’re in-game. Next, the microphone uses bidirectional technology, which expertly blocks out background noise and makes your voice sound crystal clear. Finally, the sound quality is award-winning, and the battery life can last over 20 hours. No wonder it has thousands of five-star ratings on Amazon.
- Connectivity: Wireless (Bluetooth)
- Compatible with: Xbox One, Series X, PC, Mobile
One reviewer wrote: “Quality, pro-grade headset for Xbox gamers. This headset is fantastic. [...] The sound quality is perfect, and the mic sounds very good. It doesn’t pick up too much background noise but it will have no trouble hearing you if you are soft-spoken. Overall, this header is unbeatable for the quality-to-price-ratio.”
2. The runner-up wireless headset
For a quality headset at a slightly lower price point, there’s the Turtle Beach Stealth 700. The second-generation version has quality audio, battery life, chat features, and durability — but it still wirelessly connects to your Xbox without an adapter for quick, easy integration. It also has a “superhuman” sound setting that’ll give you a competitive edge during audio-based games, while the Nanoclear speakers bring depth and immersion to everything else. In terms of comfort, this pair is cooling, soft, lightweight, and glasses-friendly. Plus, it has on-device audio presets for convenience.
One reviewer wrote: "I’ve owned Gen 1 Stealth 600s and 700s and compared to Gen 1 the quality of the Gen 2 headset is much, much better. The ear-cups are far more comfortable. It’s much less flimsy and feels like an Arctis Pro (which I have also owned). I have tried many different headsets for Xbox and Turtle Beach has the best connectivity and fewest issues."
3. The best budget Xbox One headset
Looking for a reliable headset at an affordable price? Turtle Beach’s Ear Force Recon 50 is the way to go. This $25 pair has a wired design that you can plug into any 3.5-millimeter jack for use with your Xbox One controller, PC, Mac, PS4, or mobile device. Even though it's affordable, reviewers reportthat it’s lightweight, comfortable, and provides quality sound, both from the speakers and the microphone.
- Connectivity: Wired (3.5-millimeter jack)
- Compatible with: Xbox One controller, PC, Mac, PS4, PS4 Pro, Mobile
One reviewer wrote: “For price and purpose its perfect. [...] Weight is just right. Maybe a little bulky and slight discomfort after some time.. but hey.. that's with any headphones in my past experiences. Input and output sound is good. On/off switch for mic is great and little volume wheel on the assembly is good. It's just what I needed.”
4. A comfortable headset with wide compatibility
This one’s my go-to headset. I love that it’s compatible with every major console, and I love the high-quality sound with passive noise-cancellation cups. Most importantly, however, I love how comfortable it is — in fact, out of all the headsets I’ve tried, the HyperX Cloud II is the only set that I can wear for hours on end without experiencing ear or head pain. That’s largely due to the oversize memory foam and leatherette ear pads and adjustable, padded band that’s made from lightweight aluminum. This headset also has a noise-canceling microphone which you can remove for use as standard earphones. (One thing to note: While they’ll still sound amazing on Xbox, the 7.1 virtual surround sound is for PC and Mac.)
- Connectivity: Wired (USB adapter and 3.5-millimeter jack)
- Compatible with: Xbox One, PS4, PC, Mac, Nintendo Switch, Mobile
One reviewer wrote: “They are unbelievably comfortable can wear these for hours and they sound amazing. I love how I can just switch from computer to Xbox to iPod.”
5. An affordable headset for loud environments
When you’re gaming in a loud environment, you’ll want your headset to do two things: block out the disturbances from your ears, and intelligently filter sounds through your mic so someone on the other end only hears your voice. According to reviewers, the Razer BlackShark V2 X headset delivers especially well for a unit at this price point. It produces immersive 7.1 surround sound inside of thick memory foam ear cushions to keep you focused on your game. It also has a noise-isolating microphone to filter out background and ambient sounds, and one reviewer wrote that it works so well they can “literally eat chips and no one hears [them] munching.”
- Connectivity: Wired (3.5-millimeter jack)
- Compatible with: Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PC, PS4/5, Switch, Mobile
One reviewer wrote: “I wanted a headset that would block out the household noise of kids, dogs, etc. [...] The microphone is great and does not seem to transmit too much background noise.”
6. The most durable gaming headset
Finally, if durability is your top priority, the ASTRO A10 headset is in it for the long haul. The metal band is wrapped in damage-resistant polymer that can bend, adjust, and withstand shock without breaking. This one also features thick memory-foam ear cups that don’t swivel and a mic (self-muting when you flip it up) that’s thicker than most, so it’s not as fragile. Despite all this, reviewers have raved about the comfort, sound quality, and convenience.
- Connectivity: Wired (3.5-millimeter jack)
- Compatible with: Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PS4, PC, Mac
One reviewer wrote: “Durability is unmatched. [...] Throughout the 2 and a half years I've been using it nonstop and I've had no issues. It works like new and is the best headset for something even far outside its price range.”
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